Houses with history
The town of Östersund was founded in 1786 by King Gustav III. In this area at that time there was only one farm, not far from the lake, where the ferryman lived. Those who moved to the new town were given exemption such as free taxes for 20 years and also from the rules of the guild system. This was to hasten the growth of the population.
Here is a proposal for a walk through streets and alleys in central Östersund, click on this link for map or fetch a map at Visit Östersund Tourist Center.
THE OLD SCHOOL
The upper secondary school opened in Östersund in 1849, 60 years after the town was founded. The inscription above the door ”Sapienta Duce”, means ”with wisdom as our guiding star”. Today, the Tourist Information Office is just one of the many functions operating in the building.
THE TOWN MUSEUMThis building from 1912 housed the first library in the town. The architect was Mr Wallberg. The Old Östersund Association maintains here a valuable collection of old objects and photographs from Östersund, showing the historical development of the town.
Storgatan 19 Storgatan is one of Sweden´s best preserved 1880s environments. As an example, we have the Buntmakaren built in the 1440s at the lower corner of the main square. The trader Robert Fresk ran his business here. Together with this street house and most other houses on Storgatan, they form typical cityshape for the 1880s Östersund.
SMITHENS GÅRD – Storgatan 23
In the backyard there is a loft house from the 1880s which was moved to the city by Diderik Cappelen-Smith from Norway. In the house he had colonial and wine trade. In 1887 DC Smith died and his widow Wendela took over the store and she kept it until she was over 90 years old. During this time one of the city´s finest pastry shops, owned by Maria Helin, also traded in this building. Maria also started an amusement park at Frösön and she was involved in trying to catch the Great Lake Monster.